4. NYPD Blimp

Image via Wikimedia Commons: Jonathan McIntosh

During the 2004 Republican Convention at Madison Square Garden, the NYPD made use of a blimp to monitor activity. NYPD Deputy Commissioner at the time, Paul J. Browne, stated that the department went with the FujiFilm-sponsored blimp because it could stay in the air for up to 16 hours, a much longer period of time than a helicopter could.

Police officers were also able to get crystal clear, real-time images of aerial scenes, which helped forces on the ground. The director of communications for Fujifilm at the time even told CNN that the NYPD had used the blimp to monitor activity at Yankees games, the U.S. Open tennis tournament, and the July 4th fireworks show.